E² is the seventy-third episode of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: Enterprise, the twenty-first episode of season three.
In this episode, the Enterprise encounters a version of itself that was sent 117 years into the past – now populated by the descendants of the crew as a generational ship. The two crews must work together so the modern Enterprise can access a wormhole defended by Xindi vessels.
The episode made use of the standing Enterprise sets, as well as those created for Degra’s ship. Guest stars included those who had previously appeared as members of the Xindi Council, as well as several who are new to Enterprise, who appeared as members of the future Enterprise. Most scenes were filmed between 03 and 11 February 2004, with an additional special effect shoot on 13 February.
Reviewers compared E² to a number of several other episodes, including Children of Time (S05E22), Deadlock (S02E21), and All Good Things (S07E25 & S07E26). The Nielsen ratings received by the episode equated to a 3.3/5% audience share.
To reach the rendezvous with Degra in three days, Enterprise approaches a nebula that contains a subspace corridor defended by Kovaalan vessels. The corridor lets them traverse the distance in minutes. Suddenly, an older yet enhanced copy of Enterprise appears, captained by a half-Vulcan man named Lorian, who explains that after the Enterprise enters the corridor, it will destabilise, causing Captain Archer’s version to travel 117 years into the past. Confronted with this situation, and not wanting to contaminate Earth’s time stream, it then turns itself into a generational ship to await the Xindi crisis. Arriving on board, Lorian reveals that he is the son of Commander Tucker and Sub-Commander T’Pol. Archer also meets his great-granddaughter, Karyn Archer, who is part Ikaaran, as Enterprise will rescue her great-grandmother Esilia from a spatial-anomaly field.
Lorian, after considering his knowledge of events, believes that the wormhole must be avoided altogether. Archer and Lorian then disagree over whether to implement an engine modification to Enterprise, since there is a 22% chance that it might destroy the ship. Archer then meets old T’Pol on board old Enterprise, and considers a plan where his ship could pass through safely, due to alternative modifications she suggests. A frustrated Lorian then reveals a secret plan: to steal the newer plasma injectors from Enterprise so they can confront the Xindi in place of their ancestors.
Lorian leads a raid and successfully steals the parts, but old Enterprise is disabled as it is about to go to warp and he is put in the brig. Archer is angry at having his own method of stealing engine components (as seen in “Damage” – S03E19) used against him. Lorian reveals that he had a chance to stop the Xindi Probe from “The Expanse” (S02E26) from attacking Earth, but failed because he hesitated, then the two captains finally agree to work towards their shared mission. Meanwhile, T’Pol meets her older self and discuss her addiction to Trelium-D and her relationship with Tucker. The Enterprises then enter the nebula, but Archer’s is quickly disabled. Lorian’s then tows it into the corridor using a tractor beam, intending, as it turns to attack the Kovaalan ships, to follow shortly. Archer’s Enterprise arrives safely, but old Enterprise never emerges and Archer wonders if, by successfully traversing the corridor, they ceased to exist. His thoughts are soon cut short as Degra arrives for their rendezvous.
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Production & Filming Details
- Director(s): Roxann Dawson.
- Writer(s): Michael Sussman.
- Release Date: 05 May 2004.
- Running Time: 45 minutes.
- Country: US.
- Language: English.